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Tributes 2007-12-18

Sidney Berkowitz, 86

BOARDMAN – There will be services today, Dec. 18, at 2 p.m. at the Ohev Tzedek Synagogue for Sidney Berkowitz, 86, who died Sunday afternoon.

He was born Feb. 28, 1921 to David and Fanny Berkowitz.

Mr. Berkowitz was co-owner of D. Berkowitz and Sons, with his brothers, Morton and Harold. He was also a WWII veteran.

He was a lifelong member of Ohev Tzedek, where he volunteered for many projects from board participation to annual musicals, to attending to the ritual needs of the congregation. His community involvements included many years as a member of the Rotary and as a volunteer for SCORE.

He is survived by daughter, Barbara Berkowitz-Stewart; son-in-law, Robert Stewart; son, Lee; daughter-in-law, Sandra; and grandchildren, Daniel, Rachel and Cara.

Calling hours will be today from 1:30 to 2 p.m., immediately preceding the 2 p.m. service.

Contributions can be made to the Ohev Tzedek Synagogue in his memory.

Arrangements are being handled by the Shriver-Allison-Courtley-Weller-King Funeral Home.


Mary Bushman, 93

CAMPBELL – A memorial service will be Thursday at 10 a.m. in St. Joseph the Provider Church for Mary Bushman, 93, who passed away Saturday morning at Hospice House.

Mary was born May 22, 1914 in Campbell, a daughter of Jacob and Frances Ratkay Bushman, and was a lifelong area resident.

She retired from the YMCA in downtown Youngstown, where she was the morning manager of the cafeteria for over 30 years. She was a member of St. Joseph the Provider Church and she enjoyed gardening and working outdoors.

She leaves her sister, Frances M. Bushman of Campbell, with whom she made her home; many nieces and nephews; great-nieces and great-nephews; and great-great-nieces and great-great-nephews.

Besides her parents; two sisters, Katherine Bushman and Anna Kamrad; and four brothers, Anthony, Peter, Charles and John Bushman, preceded her in death.

Funeral services were entrusted to the Wasko Funeral Home.


Helen Rita Dagati, 87

WARREN – Helen Rita Dagati, 87, formerly of Girard, died Sunday, Dec. 16, at her residence in Warren.

She was born Sept. 14, 1920 in Uniontown, Pa., the daughter of the late Michael and Elizabeth (Yanov) Smerek.

She had been employed by Packard Electric. She was a member of St. Rose Church in Girard, the Altar and Rosary Society, the Knights of Columbus Ladies Auxiliary, St. Rose Seniors, Girard Senior Citizens, Eagles FOE and Girl Scout Troop 55.

She married her husband, Anthony “Tops” D’Agati, June 26, 1942, and he passed away Dec. 8, 1966.

She is survived by a son, Dr. Joseph (Jennifer) Dagati of Canfield; a daughter, Barbara Hill of Warren; two sisters, Elizabeth Furman of South Carolina and Molly Smerek of Albuquerque, N.M.; and three grandchildren, Sarah Marino, Anthony Dagati and Lindsey Hill.

Besides her parents and her husband, she was preceded in death by a daughter, Helene Dagati; two brothers, John and Stephen Smerek; and two sisters, Mary Smerek and Ann McCoy.

There will be calling hours Wednesday from 4 to 7 p.m. at the McClurkin Funeral Home in Girard.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday at St. Rose Church, with prayers at 10:30 a.m. at the funeral home.

Donations may be made in her name to Catholic Charities.

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Velma Blair Davis

YOUNGSTOWN – Velma Blair Davis died Monday morning after a valiant fight against Alzheimers.

She was born Jan. 29, 1916 in Youngstown, the daughter of Ralph and Myrtle Blair.

She attended South High School and upon graduation in 1934 enrolled in Youngstown College in the secretarial school. She graduated with honors in 1936 and immediately became employed by McKay Machine of Youngstown. June of 1941 she married David D. Davis of Hubbard. After the war, she and D.D. started their own construction business, D.D. Davis Construction. They worked together as a team building the business into an international enterprise. D.D. never had a secretary or another business partner. Velma was there working right beside him in every aspect of the company.

For many years Velma was active in her church, the First Covenant of Boardman. She taught adult Sunday school and supported many of the activities at the church. She was part of Guideons International, Christian Women’s Club and Kiwana Queens. She was one of the founders of Ravi Zacharias International Ministries. In and around Youngstown you will see buildings dedicated to D.D. and Velma Davis. They had a heart for the community.

Velma was predeceased by her husband of 61 years, her daughter Lois Ann Fincher and her two brothers, Frank and James Blair. Her one remaining daughter, Beverly Davis lives in Kennebunkport, Maine. Velma has four grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

Funeral arrangements are by the Anstrom-Velker Funeral Home and the services will be private.

In lieu of flowers, please make any donations to Fellows Riverside Gardens, 123 McKinley Ave., Youngstown, OH 44509.

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Renee M. Fiol, 50

STRUTHERS – There will be a Mass of Christian Burial Thursday at 10 a.m. at St. Nicholas Church in Struthers with the Rev. Bernard Bonnot officiating, preceded by a 9:15 a.m. prayer service at The Rossi & Santucci Funeral Home in Boardman for Renee M. Fiol, 50, who passed away Sunday, Dec. 16.

Renee will always be remembered and loved by her family and friends.

She was born June 3, 1957 in Youngstown, the daughter of Caneva (Kenny) and Loretta (Saxie) Centofanti Guerrieri.

Renee was a 1975 graduate of Ursuline High School and Lewis, Weinberger and Hill Beauty Academy. She was a hair dresser at DD’s Beauty Shop in Struthers for the last 16 years.

She enjoyed bowling, cooking, dancing, and especially doing the twist, but most importantly she loved taking care of and spending time with her family. She had been a member of St. Nicholas Church, the Wednesday’s Ladies Variety League at the holiday bowl, and the Second Saturday Card Club.

Renee leaves behind to hold on to her wonderful memories, her husband, Manuel Fiol, whom she married April 21, 1979; a son, Michael Fiol of Florida; a daughter, Nicole Fiol of Struthers; a sister and brother, Regina (Jim) Filbert and Alesio (Kelly) Guerrieri, both of Boardman; her father and mother-in-law, Carmine and Lydia (Caballero) Procida of New York; a life-long friend, Patty (Ron) Patrick of Poland; many nieces and nephews; and great-nieces and great-nephews.

Friends may call from 3 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at The Rossi & Santucci Funeral Home, 4700 Market St., in Boardman.

Rossi & Santucci Funeral Home

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Frank S. Flauto III, 48

AUSTINTOWN – There will be services at 9:30 a.m. Thursday at the Higgins-Reardon Funeral Home, Austintown Chapel and at 10 a.m. at the Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in Austintown for Frank S. Flauto III, 48, who passed away unexpectedly at his home Sunday morning.

Frank was born Nov. 11, 1959 in Youngstown, a son of Frank S. and Joanne Sletvold Flauto Jr.

Frank was a 1978 graduate of Austintown Fitch High School. He worked at G.M. Lordstown as a tow motor operator for 24 years. He was a member of the U.A.W. No. 1112. Frank enjoyed playing billiards and he belonged to many leagues.

Frank leaves his parents, Frank and Joanne Flauto Jr. of Boardman; a daughter, Rachel L. Flauto of Valhalla, N.Y.; two sisters, Cathi (Mike) Kalinay of Youngstown and Sandy (Rich) Burns of Austintown; two nieces, Kristin Burns and Katie Burns; and his best friend, “Bear,” his dog.

Frank was preceded in death by his grandparents, George and Mary Sletvold and Frank and Anna Flauto.

Family and friends may call from 4 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at the funeral home.

Material tributes may take the form of donations to the Immaculate Heart of Mary Church.


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William C. Hardin, 84

HUBBARD – There will be no services or calling hours for William C. Hardin, 84, who passed away Sunday, Dec. 16, at his home on Drummond Avenue.

William was born Oct. 5, 1923 in Hubbard, a son of M. Jeff. and Lynn Drummond Hardin and was a lifelong area resident.

He as a 1942 graduate of Hubbard High school and served with the Army 75th Infantry Division during WWII, participating in the Battle of the Bugle. He was a plant engineer at the Westinghouse Corp. in Sharon Pa., retiring after 41 years.

His favorite past times were golfing and the Cleveland Indians.

He is survived by his brother, Donald Sr.; nieces and nephews, Heather (Lindsay) Randall of Hubbard, Donald Hardin Jr. of Columbus, Jeffrey of Milford, Scott Hardin of Lakeland Fla., Mary Lynn Bosch and Robert W. Hardin, both of California, and James Hardin of Florida.

He was preceded in death by his parents; a brother, Robert Hardin; and a special friend, Barbara Reagle.

Remembrances may be made to the Hubbard Alumni Foundation, P.O. Box 285, Hubbard, OH 44425.

Stewart-Kyle Funeral Home

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Carol Klenitch, 64

BERLIN CENTER – There will be a funeral service at 1 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 20, at the Lane Funeral Home, Austintown Chapel for Carol Klenitch, 64, who passed away at 8:03 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 16, at St. Elizabeth Health Center from complications following open heart surgery.

Carol was born Dec. 17, 1942 in Burlington, Vt., the daughter of the late Henry R. and Ethel (Jenkins) Wade.

She retired after 25 years as a nursing assistant with Briarfield Manor.

Her husband of 43 years, Edward Klenitch, whom she married Feb. 15, 1963, passed away June 17, 2006.

Carol is survived by a daughter, Cindy (Phil) Markijohn of Ellsworth; a sister, Sharon Nitzsky of Youngstown; and three grandchildren, Nick, Jason, and Lisa Markijohn.

Besides her parents and husband, Carol was preceded in death by a son, Joe Klenitch.

The family will receive friends Wednesday, Dec. 19, from 5 to 7 p.m. at the funeral home.

Family and friends may visit www.lanefuneralhomes.com to view this obituary and send condolences.



Carmen Lydia Maldonado, 76

YOUNGSTOWN – There will be funeral services Thursday at 1 p.m. at the Kubina-Yuhasz Funeral Home, Boardman Chapel, 5925 Market St., for Carmen Lydia Maldonado, 76, who died Sunday at her home.

She was born April 15, 1931 in Utuado, Puerto Rico, the youngest daughter of Jose and Marie Marin Rivera.

Carmen was a member of the Victory Christian Center. She married Luis Maldonado Sr. June 25, 1951 in Puerto Rico and had resided in Youngstown since 1952. She was employed as a custodial matron for the Youngstown City School system.

She is survived by her seven children, Ketty (Israel) Lopez of Youngstown, Nancy (Steve) Lesniewski of Boardman, Luis (Deanne) Maldonado Jr. of Boardman, Minerva Bonilla of Youngstown, Ivan (Shiela) Maldonado of Boardman, Efrain Maldonado of Youngstown, and Aida (Bartolo) Carmona-Maldonado of Jayuya, Puerto Rico; her sister, Daisy (Santiago) Hernandez and brother, Jose Rivera, both of Tampa, Florida; 18 grandchildren; and 21 great-grandchildren.

Besides her husband, who died May 11, 2004, she was preceded in death by her parents; two brothers, Celso Rivera and Helo Rivera; and a sister, Luisa Rivera.

Friends and family may call Thursday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the funeral home, prior to services.

Interment will be at Green Haven Memorial Gardens.


Marissa Jeanne Plakosh, 18

POLAND – Marissa Jeanne Plakosh, 18, passed away in the early morning hours of Saturday, Dec. 15, after an accidental shooting at her home. She was rushed to St. Elizabeth’s Hospital where she was later pronounced dead.

Marissa was born on June 22, 1989 at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Youngstown, the daughter of Jeanne (Salata) and Michael Plakosh.

Marissa attended Poland schools through the years and had touched many hearts along the way. She was a 2007 graduate of Poland Seminary High School where she amassed numerous accomplishments. She worked very diligently to excel in school as she was a member of the National Honor Society. She was also a member of the Spanish Club, a participant in Student Leadership, and a recipient of the award for Excellence in Scholarship for the years 2003 to 2007. In addition, Marissa’s academic accomplishments, she was a very talented athlete as she played softball, lettered in golf for three years and also achieved two letters in track her junior and senior year.

Thriving in school and in sports wasn’t enough for Marissa as she maintained two part time jobs at Handel’s and at Fonderlac Country Club during her last two years of high school.

It was Marissa’s dream to attend The Ohio State University as she applied to the school on the first day that they began accepting applications. She was ecstatic when she received the acceptance letter confirming her admission into Buckeye Nation.

Marissa successfully completed autumn quarter 2007 at The Ohio State University while carrying on her scholastic prosperity. She had aspirations of majoring in human nutrition, and despite her short time there, she managed to make many good friends.

Marissa was a Buckeye through and through, and she idolized Coach Jim Tressel. Some of her finest memories took place on fall football Saturdays at Ohio Stadium.

If Marissa knew from birth that she would only have 18 years to enjoy her life, she would have behaved no differently. She had no regrets as she lived everyday to the fullest. She always made the most productive and efficient use of her time. She made it a point to work out every day at the Boardman YMCA, and if the sun was shining, she was outside enjoying every ray.

Marissa was privileged enough to travel extensively throughout her life, and she loved to vacation near any beach, including her aunt and uncle’s homes in Keuka Lake, N.Y. and Ft. Myers, Fla.

Above everything else, Marissa cherished the time that she had with her friends and family. She had an endearing affection for her best friends with whom she would spend countless hours joking and having fun. Marissa’s quick-witted sense of humor spared few from laughter. Even in school, Marissa lived to make people laugh, blessing everyone around her with her radiant smile that could light up a small country.

Marissa leaves behind her mother, Jeanne; her brother, Michael; and her father, Mike. She was also beloved by her grandparents, Florence and Mike Plakosh; and her grandfather, Joseph Salata. She will be sadly missed by her great-aunt, Mary Zivchak, who was like a grandmother to her. Two special people, who were an essential part of Marissa’s upbringing, were Donna and Bob Simerlink, who babysat Marissa and Michael from birth. Marissa had several aunts and uncles who have been an integral part of her life, including her godparents, Rick and Bonnie Salata, Joe and Martha Salata, Judy and Tim Babnich, Dr. Robert and Jody Salata, Carol and Gary Bertnick, Dean and Diana Colaianni, and Joe and Michelle Plakosh. Marissa also leaves 14 cousins, with whom she was very close. The holidays will not be the same without her.

Besides the loved ones that she leaves behind, “we also remember the ones that went before her; most notably her two grandmothers, Margaret and Celestine Salata. We hope that they are holding Marissa in their arms, comforting her in heaven.”

Calling hours will be Thursday from 4 to 8 p.m. at the Kubina-Yuhasz Funeral Home, 5925 Market St. in Boardman.

There will be a funeral Mass at 10 a.m. Friday at St. Matthias Church, 915 Cornell St. in Youngstown where additional calling hours are planned from 9 to 10 a.m. at the back of the church just prior to the Mass.

As an alternative to flowers, material contributions can be made as donations to St. Matthias Church or to the Youngstown YMCA, Att: Ken Rudge.

Friends and family may visit http://missyou.last-memories.com/ to pay further tribute to Marissa.

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Lee L. Summers, 88

AUSTINTOWN – There will be funeral services at 1 p.m. Wednesday at the Lane Funeral Home, Austintown Chapel for Lee L. Summers, 88, who died Monday morning at Brairfield at the Ridge.

Lee was born Sept. 20, 1919 in Laurel Hanna, Pa., the daughter of Nicholas and Rose Volpie.

Lee was a teacher for the Austintown Local School system for 35 years teaching at West Elementary, retiring in 1977. She was in the Navel Reserves from 1943 to 1978. Lee attended the Free Will Baptist Church in Austintown. She was a member of the Mahoning County Retired Teachers Association, the Fleet Reserve Association, and the Navy League of the United States.

Her husband, Fred Summers, whom she married in 1957, died in 1961.

Lee is survived by two sisters, Angela Writeman of North Lima and Mary DeLuca of California. She is also survived by several nieces and nephews and her care givers, Mary Hutchison and Marie Toney.

Besides her husband, she was preceded in death by seven brothers and sisters.

Family and friends may call from noon to 1 p.m. on Wednesday prior to services.

Family and friends may visit www.lanefuneralhomes.com to view this obituary and send condolences.


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Harry David Woods Jr., 64

WARREN – Harry David Woods Jr., 64, died Saturday, Dec. 15, 2007 at Trumbull Memorial Hospital Emergency Room.

Mr. Woods was born Oct. 24, 1943 in Dayton, a son of Harry E. and Betty J. Denmeade Woods.

He was a 1962 graduate of Struthers High School and after graduation entered the U.S. Navy serving from June of 1962 until April of 1965.

Mr. Woods worked in the linen industry for 36 years and was currently employed with Klaben Crown Ford as a service department assistant for 3 years. He enjoyed motorcycle riding, golfing, bowling, and was an avid Cleveland Browns fan. His biggest joy was spending time with his grandchildren.

He leaves his wife, the former Rosemary Pallante, whom he married Oct. 26, 1968; two daughters, JoAnn (Bob) Nolfi and Stephanie (John) Renier, both of Niles; two brothers, Larry (Gloria) Woods of Struthers and Ricky (Connie) Woods of Crystal Lake, Ill.; two grandsons, Anthony and Michael Nolfi; two granddaughters, Shana and Sydney Woods; numerous aunts and uncles; and numerous nieces and nephews.

Mr. Woods was preceded in death by his parents.

Funeral services will be held Thursday at 11 a.m. at the Davidson-Becker Funeral Home, Struthers.

Interment will follow at Poland Riverside Cemetery.

Family and friends will be received Wednesday from 5 to 8 p.m. and Thursday from 10 to 10:45 a.m. at the funeral home.

Please visit www.beckerobits.com to send condolences.


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